It seems that it’s finally here, a truly 4K-capable 4K Gaming GPU that also doesn’t cost an outright fortune. The has finally arrived and it really blows away not only the competition but also its own cousins from the same company in terms of raw performance and sheer gaming power at high frame rates in both 4K resolution and Full HD .
Nvidia is comparing the GTX 1080 to their previous and a powerful Titan card X , which was up to now what we considered to be the single best 4K gaming GPU on the market but the comparison isn’t entirely on the mark. The 1080 is not only a much more powerful device than even that heavy-duty Maxwell powered monster was, it also costs about $400 less than the X ever did and this is a definite benefit of advancement and price decrease working in tandem for the gaming consumer market. In fact, pricewise and in terms of appearance, the 1080 is more comparable to the GTX 980 Ti and when these two are compared, the improvements from 980ti to 1080 are downright fantastic. While costing only $50 more than the 980, the 1080 delivers a level of performance that’s well beyond the capabilities of its numerical predecessor.
With a new Pascal chipset architecture, massive RAM, extraordinary clock speeds and some massive memory bandwidth, the GeForce GTX 1080 is definitely the ideal 4K PC gamer’s GPU across the board and until AMD releases its own direct competitor to this new processing unit, we have hard time not calling the 1080 the best GPU we’ve seen to-date, especially for 4K graphics processing.
For starters, this is without a doubt the fastest gaming graphics card currently on sale anywhere. It’s not only faster than all current rival cards, it’s also faster by a massive margin than its own predecessors. Measured up against the Nvidia Titan X which was the brand’s previous fastest and most powerful GPU, the 1080 manages as much as 36% more performance in real-world terms an when measured up against the 980Ti which was possibly Nvidia’s second fastest GPU up until recently, the GTX 1080 completely knocks it out of the ballpark with a performance advantage of almost 65%. In basic terms, if you want the single best graphics card on sale right now, the 1080 is your choice without a doubt, at least until we see what AMD pulls out of its magic hat as direct competition.
Aside from raw performance, or perhaps as part of its total quality, the GTX 1080 throws out some truly killer innovations as well. This is the first Nvidia GPU based on the new Pascal chip architecture that Nvidia has invested “billions” in developing. Furthermore, the 1080 is the first GPU to deliver GDDR5X RAM memory technology from Micron as well as being the first ever card to be assembled with a considerably smaller, more efficient TSMC 16nm FinFET manufacturing process.
Furthermore, thanks to these above-mentioned benefits of more efficient manufacturing and the Pascal architecture, the 1080 is also very heat and energy efficient by the standards of its power. The card thus doesn’t need to use nearly as much add-on cooling or electrical power in order to run at full force when compared to previous cards from Nvidia and especially when compared to existing AMD cards, all of which have a tendency to run hotter than their Nvidia counterparts. And to give you an idea of just what kind of power efficiency we’re talking about here, the 1080 comes with only one single eight-pin connecter power connector along its back end with a TDP feed of just 180 watts.
The core of this new power and heat efficiency mostly lies in the P104 GPU technology of the 1080, which has been built with a 16nm FinFET process that basically means Nvidia is allowed to cram way more transistors into the GTX 1080 than it could into the 980Ti or the Titan X as well. How many more? Well, 7.2 billion in the 1080 vs. the 5.2 billion into the 980 and this gain is made even more impressive by the fact that the overall space for these transistors has been made smaller as well. This means a better looking, easier to fit overall GPU body and one that uses much less power (as we referred to above) while also producing less heat.
Then, finally, need to cover the clock speeds of the GTX 1080 because they are truly impressive! The base clock of the GTX 1080 sits at a massive 1607MHz and even from this high speed can top out at a whopping 1733MHz with its boost clock. This truly is superb considering that the GTX 980 –which you should remember was until recently considered one of the two or three best GPUs on the consumer market worldwide—could only manage a boost clock of 1216MHz.
In basic terms, when you combine its amazing Pascal architecture, faster memory, superior memory compression, and those powerful clock speeds, you can see how the GeForce GTX 1080 is definitely a total winner that rushes right past the Titan X, the 980Ti and anything so far released by AMD in sheer performance. In the case of this GPU, Nvidia’s own hype about the GTX 1080 being the “new king” is without a doubt realistic. It’s not mere marketing fluff.
• CUDA Cores: 2560
• Texture Units: 160
• ROPs: 64
• Core Clock: 1607MHz
• Boost Clock: 1733MHz
• Memory Clock: 10GHz GDDR5X
• Memory Bus Width: 256-bit
• VRAM: 8GB
• TDP: 180W
• GPU: GP104
• Architecture: Pascal
• Transistor Count: 7.2 billion
• Manufacturing Process: 16nm FinFET
• Launch Date: 05/27/16
• Launch Price $599/$699
The Nvidia GTX 1080 is one ridiculously fast GPU thanks to its Pascal architecture. Without a doubt, at least among the current offerings of 4K PC graphics cards, this card completely beats everything else on the market right now. It’s almost 70% faster than its own direct predecessor the 980Ti, at least 30% faster than the Titan X and easily about 50% and 40% faster than AMD’s 390X and Fury X cutting edge GPUs respectively. And this is just the kind of average performance superiority the 1080 offers. If we go into specific examples of performance superiority in particular 4K graphics-capable games at particular detail settings, the capacity of the 1080 can massively outpace that of predecessors or rivals. Thus, for example, when running a game like Rise of the Tomb Raider at a 4K resolution under Very High detail settings, the 1080 delivers frame rate performance that’s a whopping 95.2% superior to that of the GTX 980 and 94.8% better than AMD’s Radeon 390X GPU. These are truly impressive metrics and possible thanks largely to the tremendous overclocking capacity of the card and by the extreme efficiency of its Pascal chip architecture.
Awesome New Technology
The fundamental core of why the GTX 1080 can manage all of the above power consumption and performance benchmarks so spectacularly lies in the fantastically advanced new GPU technology that powers the card. After years of 28nm manufacturing for chipsets for both Nvidia and AMD, at least Nvidia has now escaped into 16nm transistor design with the Pascal architecture of the GTX 1080. On top of this, the GTX 1080 Pascal system also packs in performance enhancing 3D FinFET processor features and a new cutting-edge GDDR5X memory technology which is much faster and more efficient than the GDDR5 of the most recent previous AMD and Nvidia GPUs. These technologies mean a massive generational leap in development that translates directly into the far superior speed, performance, graphics processing power and power usage that we’re seeing with the GeForce GTX 1080.
General performance during gameplay
In simple terms, when it comes to gaming at any resolution, the Geforce GTX 1080 is really, really fast, much faster than anything yet put out by Nvidia and far faster than anything we’ve yet seen from AMD as well, with particularly superior energy and heat efficiency over AMD cards especially. This new card’s base clock speed of 1.61 GHz can boost to a whopping 1.73 GHz and is even capable of going beyond that with overclocking kicked into high gear, and aside from these spectacular never before-seen specs, the card offers a fantastic 8 gigs of extraordinarily efficient GDDR5x memory which runs at 10 gigabits per second. Most fundamentally, the card’s Pascal architecture packs a whopping 7.2 billion transistors into a 314 square millimeter space. This is much more impressive than the 8 billion transistors packed into 601 square millimeters into the next best thing from Nvidia, the Titan X.
In other words, the card is insanely powerful when having its performance measures in any major gaming resolution setting, be it 1080p, 1440p or even 4K at high detail levels.